Cape Cod Shark Tours – Get Up Close To A Great White

By | October 11, 2022

Following my not-so-close encounter with an (unseen) great white shark at Nauset Beach, I started looking into companies offering “Cape Cod Shark Tours” to hopefully see one up close and in-person. For all I know, that boat and plane I saw that day at the beach was one such charter.

a great white shark swims underwater.

Photo of great white shark by Elias Levy, used under Creative Commons license.

Why are There so Many Sharks around Cape Cod?

If you’re like me, you may be wondering why so many white sharks have taken to Cape Cod and its islands. It starts with the protection of one of the sharks’ favorite prey: seals.  Massachusetts outlawed seal hunting in the 1960s, and that allowed seal populations around the Cape to rebound strongly. This in turn has led to more sharks coming to Cape Cod waters to feed. It wasn’t until 1997, however, that the United States set up protections for great white sharks in federal waters (those waters from three to two hundred miles off shore). Massachusetts followed suit in 2005, making it illegal to fish for white sharks in state waters (within three miles of shore).

These protections have now provided regular and somewhat predictable opportunities to go out on the water and spot these magnificent apex predators in the wild!

How to See Great Whites Around Cape Cod

Lucky for shark enthusiasts or fans of JAWS, there are many charters and services on the Cape that offer great white shark sightseeing. So grab your family or a group of friends and get closer to a great white shark than you ever thought possible!

Cape Cod Shark Tours

Bluewater Entertainment
Location: Ryder’s Cove, North Chatham
Instagram: @bluewaterentertainment
Description: Bluewater offers shark tours with and without an airplane spotter (recommended).

Monomoy Sportfishing
Location: Ryder’s Cove, North Chatham
Instagram: @monomoysportfishing
Description: Monomoy works with an airplane spotter and boasts a 99% success rate for seeing a shark while on the trip.

Jail Break Fishing Charters
Location: Saquatucket Harbor, Harwich Port, MA
Instagram: @jailbreakfishingcharters
Description: Jail Break offers great white shark sightseeing excursions and also bluefin tuna/shark fishing trips (targeting mako, blue, and thresher sharks).

White Shark Tours Cape Cod
Location: Multiple launch locations in Denis, Orleans, and South Yarmouth.
Description: White Shark Tours boast an excellent success rate and the majority of tours spot multiple white sharks.

Atlantic White Shark Conservatory
Location: Chatham
Description: AWSC offers both data receiver recovery tours and shark-spotting exhibitions (in partner with Bluewater Entertainment).


Be sure to tip your captain and then let us know how your experience was on your Cape Cod Shark Tour!

Want to learn more about great white sharks on Cape Cod, check out our awesome trips to the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy!

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